♦ CHAPTER FOURTEEN ♦Judicial YogaThe tangled logic of corporate rights

WHAT LEGAL RATIONALES has the Supreme Court relied on to establish corporate rights? How well do those rationales stand up to an audit of their logical coherence?

At first glance, the Supreme Court’s development of corporate rights has the appearance of an orderly and careful progression. It begins with the foundation decision in the 1886 Santa Clara case declaring corporations to be entitled to the same “equal protection” as persons under the Fourteenth Amendment. Then, over the course of the following century, the Court examines first one case and then another, gradually expanding the set of corporate rights. (The entire corporate bill of rights is shown in Table 1.1 ...

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